PER GB data comes down to 12 Rupees from 300 Rupees- Mukesh Ambani

Conversation Between Mukesh Ambani and Satya Nadal

Sh Satya Nadella

So Mukesh I thought, perhaps, making the story. I know I have heard you speak very passionately about just India’s potential, and especially since we were having the conversation about what can the next 10 years represent. You can share, like you’ve talked about like how Indian economy will grow and how digital will be a big part of it maybe share your thoughts on how you see, perhaps, this economy thrive in the next 10 years.


Absolutely. Before I answer that Satya. On behalf of all of us Welcome to India and Mumbai.

And I wanted to warmly congratulate you on your leadership and the transformation and the success of Microsoft over the last many years, and I think every Indian is very very proud. What I admire about and what I learned is that in your leadership style, you have demonstrated your ability to rely on partnerships and build trust and relationships. And you think about every mistake as a learning opportunity. And you believe that it’s not products or profit, but really people, and their continuous reinvention of capability. That’s the strength of the organisation. I think all of us in India inc are inspired and thank you for all your leadership. Personally, I am very committed, and I’m very privileged Satya that you have committed to India, on a scale that I never anticipated that a multinational will, and we’re very excited about the partnership that Jio and Microsoft will have. And I think that as we look at this decade, it will be a defining partnership. So, thank you for your commitment to India.

Sh Nadella

Absolutely, thank you.

Sh Ambani

Now, let me answer your question.

I think that as we are speaking, President Trump has arrived in Ahmedabad, and the, India, that he will see in 2020 is very different from the India that either President Carter saw or Clinton saw when he came here or even Obama. Right. We have millions of people on the street, each one of them having their own phones and its experience, and the networks are strong enough. I can easily say that the mobile networks in India now are better or at par with anybody else in the world. And that’s the big change when you, when he reaches the stadium. If we talk about the Stadium, the infrastructure in that stadium in terms of digital is better than any other place in the world. So that is the India as we start in 2020.

If you think about when your own journey started and think about 1992 when you joined Microsoft, India was $300 billion. Today, India is $3 trillion.

And fundamentally, this whole progress in a certain way, has happened on the back of technology. In the early days it was TCS, Infosys. And all of them who drove technology in India. And that really kick started with all economic reforms. And this whole growth paradigm got supercharged in 2014 when Prime Minister gave us the vision of Digital India. And if you then see what has followed.  I was privileged to play a very small role in it, with the launch of Jio.

And just to share with you and the audience.

Pre Jio the 256 kbps which we used to call broadband in India and post Jio we now have 21 Mbps on mobile data as the average speed available in every single village in India.

The pre-Jio price of data in this country was between 300 and 500 hundred rupees (per GB). And for the poorest of poor people who use 2G the prices as high as 10,000 rupees.

Post Jio the price is between 12 and 14 rupees a GB. And the usage (has grown exponentially). And a lot of what Jio has achieved in the last three years, is (38 crore people) that 380 million customers have migrated to this 4G technology.

And that tells you the enthusiasm in the youth of India. The enthusiasm in consumption in India. And the enthusiasm, even in my mother who’s 85 years old, and the amount of time, she spends (on the phone). So, in your language she has the greatest technical security. I think that’s really what has happened so consumption has also gone up and this has really become a people’s movement.

And then you talk about the financial sector. We just introduced UPI, and with digitization we had 100% growth and total UPI transactions in this country have crossed 2 lakh crores! So what has happened is that, because we’ve got infrastructure, we are accelerating and we are just at the beginning of this whole journey.

Sh Nadella

And that’s one of the things I was going to ask you because, in some sense, all of what you’ve done in laying out the network capability you talked about what that has led to this, in people being empowered consuming more using more.

And what I mean you have the best rates, and connectivity today. Now, you also have an ambition to say what can you do for small businesses medium businesses, large because you know even saying, Okay, how do we in fact our partnership in some senses about how you take what I talked about, combine it with your domain expertise your technology and completely change the landscape of broad sectoral change.

Sh Ambani

So let me again Satya start with saying that Reliance was founded as a startup, my father founded Reliance with a table and a chair and 1000 rupees five decades ago. It then became a Micro industry, and then a Small industry and today you can consider us as Large. I have been again, very fortunate in terms of knowing (the journey of Microsoft), and Steve and Bill from my Stanford days. So even before Microsoft was founded, Steve was being recruited by Bill and I’ve seen the growth of Microsoft.

Sh Nadella

Since there must have been something in the air since both of you dropped out.

Sh Ambani

And you know why I’m saying this is fundamentally to just drive the point that every small business and entrepreneur, has the potential in India to become Dhirubhai Ambani or Bill Gates. And that is the power that differentiates India, from the rest of the world. I think the entrepreneurial power we have at the grassroots is enormous. And what this decade will offer (will be enormous) if we even see the opening balance of small, medium and micro enterprises. We have to realise that for India. They provide 70% of India’s employment. They drive 40% of India’s export. And they are critical to all the economic activity that we see. And they have had done this, again, with zero technical enablement and technology adoption. So the opportunity there is to really go from low technology low digitization, and to help them adopt technology and digitization. And our partnership with Microsoft is to really give them full service to make sure that they are fully enabled, with the tool set and the data set. An opportunity exists, right, to really propel India forward, and that is even a bigger opportunity than the tremendous consumer base growth that we’ve seen in the last few years.




Sh Nadella


Maybe we can close out I mean you you sort of referenced, how your father, you know, five decades ago, got started with a dream and a hope of what is possible and created what is today, you know, one of the most amazing stories in business. When you now leading this organisation Look out, what sort of drives you What inspires you. What is it that you would like to see happen.

Sh Ambani

Well, I think that opportunity that we have for India really, is the opportunity to become the premier digital society in the world. I think that all the components are coming in place. As we grow and march forward I have no doubt in my mind that we will become among the top three economies in the world. 30 years ago, we were saying, okay, where will India be? Now I think that if you talk to anybody, there is no doubt in anybody’s mind. We can argue about whether it will happen in five years of 10 years but it’s going to happen, and we will be in the top three countries in the world. When that happens, our opportunity will be to see if we can be the most technically enabled society. Will we be having all our development enabled by all the tools of technology. Can we really be a pacesetter in terms of using our technology. And again what our Prime Minister says is can we then use technology for businesses so that there is greater ease of business. And then in partnership can we also deliver ease of living for every citizen of India, and be a society that is equal for all, has ethics and really gives equal opportunity to empower everybody to find their potential. And that, I think, in the coming, two decades, is the opportunity that India has. What next generations of India will see is a very different India than what you have grown up in, and I think all of us should be working towards that. Through our own partnership between Jio and Microsoft, we’ll work with businesses from startups to micro enterprises to merchants and shopkeepers to really large enterprises to drive an equal ease of doing business.

Another thing that Akash talks about and I must mention is gaming. Gaming doesn’t really exist in India, and with everything that we’re doing in cloud and broadband connectivity, I think there is huge potential, and for some of us, like, who don’t know what gaming is, it’s very hard to imagine that gaming will be bigger than music, movies and TV shows all put together. Another Fantastic opportunity. Thank you so much.


Sh Nadella

Okay, thank you for your leadership and. Thank you.

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